URI to host talks by researcher at center of Malcolm X documentary and a community health specialist as part of Black History Month

Both talks to be presented remotely Feb. 24

Media Contact: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-5862 |

KINGSTON, R.I. — Feb. 19, 2021 — The University of Rhode Island will present talks on Feb. 24 by Abdur-Rahman Muhammad, star of the Emmy-nominated docu-series, “Who Killed Malcolm X?” and Carolyn Parks, associate professor at Temple University’s College of Public Health, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Carolyn Parks
Carolyn Parks

Parks, whose talk is titled “COVID-19 and the African American Community,” will speak from 2 to 3:15 p.m. Register here for the Zoom presentation.

Muhammad, whose research is covered in the docu-series “Who Killed Malcolm X?,” will speak from 7 to 8:30 p.m. along with a question-and-answer component. Register here for the Zoom presentation. Muhammad is the Multicultural Student Service’s Center’s ’s Black History Month keynote speaker.

The Parks lecture is sponsored by the Department of Africana Studies and the College of Arts and Sciences. The Muhammad keynote lecture is sponsored by the Multicultural Student Services Center, the Department of Africana Studies and the College of Arts and Sciences.

Carolyn Parks biography

For more than 30 years, Parks has been a practicing community health education specialist with a passion for helping individuals, groups and communities to identify and solve their own health problems. Her community research and practice has focused on the development, implementation and evaluation of community-based and grassroots health promotion and disease prevention strategies for African-Americans, disadvantaged and vulnerable populations, and other groups of color on a broad range of health and disparities issues in various settings.

Her specific areas of expertise include: health promotion through African-American churches; community assets mapping; community-based public health research and practice; empowerment education; exploring the health impacts of the “strong Black woman” phenomenon; the development of culturally relevant health education materials, programs, and research instruments; barriers to health communication and health care services provided for groups of color and low socioeconomic populations; and HIV/AIDS interventions for women.

Abdur-Rahman Muhammad
Abdur-Rahman Muhammad

 Abdur-Rahman Muhammad biography

Providence native Abdur-Rahman Muhammad is profiled  in the Emmy-nominated docu-series “Who Killed Malcolm X?,” which continues to be popular on Netflix nearly a year after its release date. Muhammad ultimately re-wrote history through his research on the assassination of Malcolm X.

Upon entering Howard University in 1983, Muhammad began studying the work of Malcolm X. For more than 30 years, he researched the assassination of the slain civil rights leader. His findings have not only rewritten history, but answered the question posed by the docu-series title, and has sparked interest in re-opening the case nearly 55 years after the assassination.

The event will feature student leaders collaborating with the Multicultural Student Services Center from the Multicultural Unity and Student Involvement Council (M.U.S.I.C); Brothers On a New Direction (B.O.N.D); the Black Student Union (BSU); the Cape Verdean Student Association (CVSA); and the Muslim Student Association (MSA).

URI Africana Studies Alumni Symposium–The Next Generation

In addition to the lectures, the University will present a panel featuring Africana Studies alumni, Friday, Feb. 26, from 8 to 9 p.m.

The program features a conversation with several alumni who will discuss Black progress from the perspective of the next generation. Registration information will be posted here. The panel will feature:

The program features a conversation with several alumni who will discuss Black progress from the perspective of the next generation. Watch the Africana Studies home page for a link to join the session. No registration is required.

The panel will feature:

MODERATOR: Wilson Okello, G’12 , assistant professor of education, University of North Carolina Wilmington

PANELISTS:
Luckson Omoaregba ‘16, counselor, Higher Education Student Services
Oluwadamilol Animashaun ‘16, attorney
Alice Odhiambo ‘11, G’14, public relations and marketing specialist
Keisha Opoku ’15, head nurse
Tim Quainoo ’12, pastor and dean of students, College Unbound
Matt Quainoo ’15,  pastor, Ph.D. expected in history, Howard University
Steph Oliveira ‘20, MBA graduate student